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Old 07-15-2010, 04:27 PM   #1
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First year growing Kale....any recipe ideas?

Last night I sauteed it in a bit of garlic and olive oil. Added a little water to cook it down. Topped it with a little salt and pepper and a very small drizzle of sweet red wine vinegar. It didn't do a lot for me.

Have you used it in cabbage salad? Baked it to a crispy crunch? I've heard of this, but haven't tried it yet. Any ideas for using it? Does it freeze to use later for soup? It seems like it would be full of nutrients.

Ideas welcomed!


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Old 07-15-2010, 11:08 PM   #2
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My favorite way to use kale is in soups...veggie, ministrone, potato, kielbasa/cabbage...the list goes on. I really can't think of another way I've used it, except as a garnish.


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Old 07-16-2010, 12:13 AM   #3
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Though I do not have it, I've seen Olive Garden's recipe for Souppe Tuscana online. It has kale in it. If the soup recipe is anything like the restaurant's recipe, it is kale done right.

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Old 07-16-2010, 04:49 AM   #4
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Can be made like creamed chopped spinach.
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Old 07-16-2010, 06:13 AM   #5
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Caldo Verde!!!
You can blanch the kale, drain very well and freeze it for later use.
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Old 07-16-2010, 12:30 PM   #6
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Kale is one of those things that needs fairly long cooking to be satisfying and tasty.

*Step #1.Fill a big pot with water.

*While waiting for it to boil, remove the thickest part of the kale stem, but leave the rest.

*You could salt the water if you want.

*Stuff a whole bunch of the trimmed kale into the water, let it boil a wee bit, turn the heat down, and cook for 10 - 15 minutes. This is for mature kale. For younger kale, try maximum 5 minutes.

*It is properly cooked when it has started to turn off-green, ie, no longer bright green. At this point it becomes somewhat sweet. That's what you want.
It has been suggested that this longer cooking method removes harsh, possibly medicinal substances that you do not need. At the same time, minerals are transformed into a more digestible state.

*Step #2: Drain into a colander. Let cool for a bit so you can handle it.

*Chop the kale up, add natural soy sauce or plain salt if you wish, a bit of oil and it is ready to eat.

*But if you want really, really tasty kale, sautee the chopped-up kale in some oil first, adding some garlic or minced onion. After sauteeing and stirring a bit, it's ready. It is extra nice with a bit of lemon juice, salt or whatever you like.

*I promise you, it will be good.

Same procedure goes for collards.
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Old 07-16-2010, 01:27 PM   #7
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besides all of the soup ideas, it can be used in a stir fry after being blanched a bit.

it's also good used in bean salads, again after blanching or sauteeing down so it won't be so tough.
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Old 07-16-2010, 02:33 PM   #8
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Actually, I have to respectfully disagree with "DaisyMae" a bit. Unless you're dealing with huge old leaves, Kale definitely does not require a "fairly long cooking time". Certainly not as long as I've had to cook thicker greens like Collards. There's nothing like mushy grayish-green greens to turn you off Kale (& other cooked greens) forever - lol! If you're growing it yourself or buying from a farmers market, picking or choosing young & tender leaves - & especially flat-leaf types like "Red Russian" - don't require particularly long cooking at all. In fact, tender young Kale is at its best when just a wee bit past the wilted stage - like any other fresh young green. Here are two of my favorite recipes for enjoying it, neither of which cooks the kale much past wilting stage & both absolutely delicious:


1 pound penne pasta (Barilla is my favorite brand), cooked according to package directions & drained
1 block/container of Feta cheese, chopped/crumbled
Approx. 24 Kalamata olives, pitted, & roughly chopped **
Approx. 1 pound Kale, rinsed, stems removed & discarded, & leaves roughly sliced/chopped
1 red onion, peeled & chopped
A few dollops of extra virgin olive oil for sauteeing
Dash or so of chicken broth or water
Dash of crushed red pepper flakes (optional)

While the cooked pasta is draining in a colander, heat the olive oil & saute the onion until soft but not brown in the pot the pasta was cooked in. Add the kale, stir a bit, & add a dash or 2 of chicken broth or water to prevent burning. Add chopped olives & stir until kale has wilted down. Add cooked pasta, feta cheese, & crushed red pepper & stir again until pasta is heated through. Serve hot or at room temperature.

** If you can’t obtain pitted olives, pitting them is accomplished easily by simply placing your broad kitchen knife (sharp side away from you) over each olive & briskly hitting down on the knife with your hand. Olive will break open & pit will be easy to remove.


One medium onion, peeled & chopped
One pound of kale, de-ribbed & roughly sliced/chopped
1-1/2 quarts or so of chicken stock (if not homemade, I usually use one carton + one can of Swanson's)
Two medium potatoes, peeled & diced -OR- two cans of cannelini/white kidney beans, rinsed **
One package (usually 12 to 16 ounces) turkey kielbasa sausage, sliced
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Salt & Pepper to taste

In a large soup pot add enough olive oil to coat the bottom & saute onion until starting to soften, but not brown. Add sliced sausage & continue sauteeing until everything is just starting to brown a little. Add chicken stock & diced potatoes (if using) & simmer until potatoes are tender - about 15 minutes or so. Add kale & continue cooking until kale is tender. (** if using beans instead of potatoes, add chicken stock & bring to a simmer. Add kale & cook until tender; then add beans & stir gently until beans are just heated thru.) Add salt & freshly ground black pepper to taste & serve.

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Old 07-16-2010, 02:44 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by KathleenA View Post
Though I do not have it, I've seen Olive Garden's recipe for Souppe Tuscana online. It has kale in it. If the soup recipe is anything like the restaurant's recipe, it is kale done right.

Yes, I've made it before. Super easy and so good! Here it is.

Olive Garden Zuppa Toscana: Tuscan Soup Recipe made at the restaurant
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Old 07-16-2010, 02:57 PM   #10
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OH, thank you, thank you!! You all have been so kind. I can't wait to try these recipes!!
Bless you!

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